U.S. Department of Education Senior Official to Participate in Town Hall in Denver

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Brenda Girton-Mitchell, director of the U.S. Department of Education’s Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, will participate in a “Together for Tomorrow” town hall on the value of community partnerships in helping to propel school improvement. The event will take place on Friday at Montbello High School in Denver. Mara Vanderslice Kelly, deputy director of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, will join Girton-Mitchell. There will be a question-and-answer session after the town hall. A media avail will follow.

Montbello High School is a part of the Denver Summit Schools Network (DSSN), which is comprised of elementary, middle and high schools. The efforts of the DSSN has resulted in significant gains for the schools that are part of the network. For example, more Montbello High School seniors graduated this year compared with previous years. In addition, discipline incidents at the school significantly went down and attendance went up.

The White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Corporation for National and Community Service are sponsoring the Together for Tomorrow town hall. Together for Tomorrow is an initiative that spotlights and fosters partnerships among schools, families, national service programs, and community-based organizations in order to help turn around low-performing schools. Several months ago, the Secretary launched the initiative’s public challenge at tft.challenge.gov. The challenge is an opportunity for schools and districts, institutions of higher education, and nonprofit organizations to join with other partners in efforts to improve their neediest schools by raising key measurable student outcomes: Attendance, Behavior, Course performance and college access, also known as the ABCs.